Inflammatory Markers and Plasma Fatty Acids in Predicting WBC Level Alterations in Association With Glucose-Related Markers: A Cross-Sectional Study

Gurum Shin, Kyunghye Jang, Minjoo Kim, Jong Ho Lee, Hye Jin Yoo

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6 Citations (Scopus)


Aging leads to immune function changes which contribute to occurrence of chronic conditions. White blood cell (WBC) level is a marker widely known to reflect the immune function, thus, prediction of WBC level changes by using certain biomarkers is needed to prevent chronic conditions and to decrease the burdens of aging. In this respect, the present study aimed to explore the relationships between inflammatory markers and plasma fatty acid (FA) composition according to WBC levels for verifying potential predictors of WBC levels. Study subjects were divided into three groups according to their WBC count: moderate-low WBC (MLW), normal WBC, and moderate-high WBC (MHW). Inflammatory markers were measured, and plasma FA profiles were constructed via gas chromatography-mass spectrometry (GC-MS). In the MHW group, insulin, homeostatic model assessment of insulin resistance (HOMA-IR), γ-glutamyltransferase (GGT), high-sensitivity C-reactive protein (hs-CRP), and interferon (IFN)-γ showed significant increases compared to those in the other groups. In addition, the granulocyte-to-lymphocyte ratio (GLR) significantly increased according to the WBC levels, whereas the platelet-to-lymphocyte ratio (PLR) showed the opposite result. Total ω-3 polyunsaturated fatty acids (PUFAs) showed significant differences among the groups. Regarding ω-6 PUFAs, dihomo-γ-linolenic acid and docosatetraenoic acid levels were significantly increased in the MHW group compared to the other groups. Finally, multivariate linear regression analysis revealed that GGT, hs-CRP, IFN-γ, ω-3 PUFAs, and dihomo-γ-linolenic acid were independent factors for altering WBC levels. In conclusion, elevated WBC levels accompanied by an increased GLR and a decreased PLR were associated with the risk of type 2 diabetes based on increased insulin and HOMA-IR levels and decreased adiponectin levels. Additionally, GGT, hs-CRP, IFN-γ, ω-3 PUFAs, and dihomo-γ-linolenic acid levels emerged as independent biomarkers for predicting WBC level alterations. Therefore, this study showed that these inflammatory markers and plasma FAs not only affect WBC level alterations but also may play roles in the risk of type 2 diabetes as one of the chronic conditions by certain mechanisms, which should be further studied. Finally, checking these biomarkers along with WBC levels can be helpful to prevent the chronic conditions.

Original languageEnglish
Article number629
JournalFrontiers in Immunology
Publication statusPublished - 2020 Apr 14

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
This research was supported by the Basic Science Research Program through the National Research Foundation of Korea (NRF) funded by the Ministry of Education [NRF-2019R1I1A1A01061695, NRF-2019R1I1A2A01061731].

Publisher Copyright:
© Copyright © 2020 Shin, Jang, Kim, Lee and Yoo.

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Immunology and Allergy
  • Immunology


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